So many details go into organizing and hosting an event small or large. Here are some tips from local professionals on things to remember when planning an event this upcoming season.
Timing is everything. If you’re wanting to host a party at a venue, Jackie Potter, owner of Station 13, says time is of the essence. Fall and winter dates are already filling up at her event venue.
“Some clients are hesitant to book not knowing how COVID will affect them,” Potter says. “I would encourage them to talk to their venue and understand the policies they have in place regarding canceling/rescheduling an event due to COVID.”
“Things are constantly changing and COVID is affecting all of us in different ways,” Potter says.
She also encourages looking at venues with both indoor and outdoor space.
Event professionals like Justin Thompson, chef and owner of Justin Thompson Catering, review several key points with their clients prior to the event such as the type of the event, size, on-site vendors and setup.
“We always tend to focus on what our guests are celebrating so we can enhance their experience. We don’t ever think the food should be the star of the show, but that it should be a supporting role to the celebration at hand,”
Thompson says. “That may sound weird to hear a chef say food isn’t the most important part of the event, but we truly believe we are there to be the perfect complement to our guests’ weddings, rehearsal dinners, birthdays, holiday parties or whatever else they’re celebrating.”
With parties and gatherings comes food and drink. Justin Thompson, chef and owner of Justin Thompson Catering, shares some trends for the upcoming holiday party season.
Comfort food is in. “Going back to friendly favorites and dishes that people know will be crowd pleasers has been the trend for us a little more than the multi-course dinners we’ve seen in the past,” he says. Since gatherings and celebrations were nonexistent or greatly minimized over the past year and a half, hosts want to ensure guests’ expectations are met and exceeded.
With buffets trending downward, more requests have been made for individually boxed meals served in an outdoor venue. “But the more common trend is gatherings of fewer people,” he says.
Thompson and his crew are following health precautions and continue to wear masks and gloves at events and check temperatures of staff.
“We do our best to give our guests comfort in knowing we do all we can to honor food safety, as we’ve always done as a company,” he says.